Tuesday, September 29, 2009


I'm not going to lie to you, Saturday was an experiment, and I learned a lot. I wanted to do a drop down drag out dungeon crawl just to see how things went. Now, everybody had fun, but it seemed like the tangents were more common and it felt like there was a general sort of "get us the fuck out of here" mentality to the group. This is probably the basics of DMing, but variety is more fun than dungeon crawl after dungeon crawl. The second scenario was a mix of skill checks and dialogue and battles (some of which were in fact dungeon crawls), and everyone seemed to have a lot of fun. The reason DnD has sucked a bit in the past is because of the lack of variety to my scenarios. They were all cooker cutter, lengthy dialogue in the beginning, journey to hole in ground, kill x amount of denizens, reclaim y objects, return. Repeat. Now, it was kind of a chicken/egg situation, did nobody care or feel like putting much effort forth because the scenarios sucked? Or did I make shitty campaigns because no one cared? I honestly cannot remember. Seems like it might be a bit of both, at least that is what I tell myself.

I'm going to let you in on a secret, fights are easy. They are the simplest most basic form of encounters. Add up the xp value of the enemies, make sure it reaches a certain total, make two or more variations in the event of extra NPCs or extra players. Done. Repeat a few times. The DMG states that there should be roughly eight to ten encounters per scenario. Or maybe level. I can't remember which. Encounters can be traps, fights, skill challenges, anything that eats up more than the time it takes to open a door really.

I think my new template for scenarios will be three or four fights, a similar number of skill challenges/big deal traps/puzzles, and just something interesting. Which is a nice transition into my next paragraph: the steam wagon.

The steam wagon was supposed to be kind of a neat, wonky, fast-paced little side thing. Ensel was supposed to be utterly ridiculous, there was actually some dialogue about how bears are attracted to menstruation and the similar effect of wolf-iron on dwarves that I did not get a chance to use. Moving along. There was a steam lorry, which are steam powered trucks made up until...the mid 1900s I think. I wanted to expose the group to the steam driven aspects of the campaign and give them a chance to blow away some dwarves with cannons. I mean, how often do you get to fire a cannon in DnD?

As I was running the encounter I got the impression that no one was terribly amused and/or impressed by it. I also forgot what I involved a turbine in the process for, I vaguely recall there being a point for a turbine in there, but I don't know what it was. It wasn't an electric wagon and the powered armor didn't really have any electric components, it was mostly pneumatic actuators. Regardless, I felt like the whole scene failed and didn't really add anything to the scenario. I will have to work harder on making steampunk real to the group.

The Kusseth scenario is progressing nicely. I'm working on the portion centered around Spineplate finding his creator, it also involves Traith Harris. This scenario will be much more akin to the second scenario, a lot of variety. One quest/scene/encounter/etc will involve a feud! Another involes the group being temporarily deputized and aiding a warden in controlling a riot! I'm really excited about this scenario, but also somewhat concerned. Kusseth is basically a labyrinth of constant construction and twisting streets. There are streets that have literally not seen the tread of a warden's feet in over a decade. You ever see John Carpenter's Assault on Precinct 13? That kind of shit happens in Kusseth. Monthly. There are areas where there are no citizens, just bards and wardens (and their deputies) just making war in the streets. Kusseth is a big place, at least the size of New York City, there is a lot to do and a lot of trouble to get into. I'm concerned they'll just decide to set up camp there and remain there, which I would be ok with, except that I have things planned for Hell. Oh, by the way, Meroteth was what Hell was called when it was the capital of the Fell Peaks, then Cenn the Reaver fucked the place up when he conquered it and renamed it. Its not exactly common knowledge that that is what it used to be called, but you're not going to have to go looking in musty tomes in musty libraries for that info.

I have a plan for the fifth scenario, should be something interesting if I can get it to work properly. I might actually need a month or two to work on this one to get it where I like it. Or not. I really won't know until I start typing things down and trying to make stuff fit. The concept is fun and neat enough, to me at least, but I'm not sure about the implementation.

I gotta say, I was really concerned about this campaign and my possible botching of it and the possible waning of my interest. I'm doing alright though. Jeremy is a big part of that, just the complete turnaround in the type of gamer he is is just awesome to behold. As I said, I'm doing good. I'm planning ahead and cutting corners in a reasonable fashion where I can to save myself some work, I'm also not in DnD mode 100% of the time, so I'm not constantly running around in my own skull about it. There is a set time for DnD, a set time for TV, a set time for hanging out with Heather, and I attempt to keep it all separate so I'm not all about DnD all the time and don't just burn out about it every other day. I'm keeping my campaign coherent and not changing ideas every other scenario (like Shadow Chasers), I'm not working on another campaign while doing this one (aside from some slight GURPS conversion, which has ceased), and I'm kind of trying new ideas. These are good things my friends. I am actually a wee bit proud of myself that I'm doing so well, but a little bummed that Tony and Shawn won't/can't be there to enjoy the fruits of my labors.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Inconsistencies Continued, Part 8

It took all of five minutes for the Doctor to grow bored with his twin and begin the process of hacking up the demon” and finding out how it worked. The others watched him hack the thing up for about two hours and then listened to him mutter things about pain receptors that didn’t register heat and compressed layers of cartilage in place of skin for another hour. What it boiled down to was this: it wasn’t flammable and its skin was actually a flexible exoskeleton resistant to multiple forms of damage, and it could probably see extremely well in the dark.

The sword wasn’t actually metal and hadn’t actually been forged. Despite its metallic appearance it was actually a type of stone similar to obsidian and it bore some marks indicating that it had been knapped to a nearly monomolecular edge, which was why it had been able to cut so deeply into the Robot. Striking the Robot had dulled the edge considerably, but it could likely still hack off a flesh and blood limb with great ease.

When the Sorcerer woke up and they got him talking in a language they could all understand, he had some interesting stories to tell. The language he spoke was something that ended up similar to a cross between Russian and German, at least enough that the Robot and Doctor were able to piece it together and get a halfway decent picture of the events that had caused the visitation.

The gist of it was that the Germans were messing with forces far beyond their control and they had no intention of understanding those forces before they got themselves in over their head. Their so called occultists” were using rituals and machines to play with the very fabric of space, time, and reality itself. The Sorcerer claimed that reality was like an enormous disco ball, this was an interpretation of the Doctor’s, and at its core was one true reality and all others were reflections of light cast on the wall. Earth and the place the Sorcerer was from were two of those reflections that fell close to one another.

The German occultists” were playing with the light source and drawing one reality close to the other in an attempt to call warriors from the Sorcerer’s world to their own to exterminate their enemies. The Atlanteans were savage and unstoppable warriors, but these creatures, these world hopping mercenaries were exponentially worse. All they asked of the Germans was a death toll, they would kill for the Germans until they reached a certain death toll and then they would fall back into their own world, but if they did not reach that number fighting the foes of the Germans they would turn on those that called them into this world.

To plan for this the Germans had begun breeding Jews and blacks in their camps to help pay the toll, the death camps were where they threw educated Jews and undesirables not the stock they were breeding to pay the toll. What the Germans didn’t realize was that the creatures from the Sorcerer’s world, which he called dayvuhs, valued human life as much as the Germans valued those of the Jews. The Sorcerer had no true knowledge of the complex value system the dayvuhs rated life at, his best estimation was that they could empty the Earth of all life two, perhaps three, times before the agreed upon toll was reached and he only knew that because that was what had happened to his world.

When asked how he was able to travel between worlds, the Sorcerer responded with something that amounted to saying magic did it. The Doctor scoffed when the Robot finished translating and the Robot made the strange clunking noises he always made when his processors were trying to analyze information at high speeds. No one was exactly sure why his insides made noises when he was standing still, he was primarily electrical in nature and aside from some servos and actuators built around his motion centers he didn’t have too many moving parts.

I believe I have misinterpreted his words.”

How’s that now,” asked the Doctor.

We are assuming his language to be some bastardized hybrid of Russian and German and also assigning our own native values to his words, whereas his language could have evolved over time to give alternate names for various concepts and systems. I believe we have incorrectly interpreted his version of science for magic.”

What are you saying?”

I believe,”

If I may interrupt you for a moment,” said the Sorcerer in only slightly accented English.

The Robot was unfazed and said,

By all means.”

I believe the golem is accurate in his assessment. I have inaccurately communicated my methods of travel. To travel between words is no mean feat and the rituals required to summon and direct energy in the proper combinations is quite difficult. It took many months to collect and store the necessary energy in the properly anointed receptacles. I did not just wave my hands and wish myself here.”

The Gangster, Doctor, and Driver exchanged looks, and the Doctor said, That sounds like magic.”

The Sorcerer paused in thought and scrunched his eyebrows together in concentration, trying to find the proper words in this unfamiliar tongue.

You,” he gestured at the Doctor, are an artificer, a builder of machines and mechanisms.”

The Doctor nodded.

You manipulate physical objects with physical forces, correct?”

For the most part.”

Good. My skillset is one of invisible forces and their manipulation. With the proper concentration and connection to an adequate source of energy I can manipulate the molecules of the air around us to cause friction and summon fire from thin air. With properly timed blows from my boot heel and the application of the proper amount of energy I can cause an earthquake to be produced from those vibrations. My magic is no less mundane than your own, merely of a different type. As is fitting, you and I are opposite sides of the same coin my friend.”

Yes, but where do you get this so called energy” to fuel these spells”?”

In my world we have built enormous crystalline obelisks that rise miles into the air. Over the centuries they have absorbed everything from solar radiation to lightning bolts, to the kinetic energy imparted upon them by falling stars as they strike them. They offer nearly limitless energy that can be tapped and directed if one knows the proper formula and incantations.”

Formula and incantations, you’re back to talking magic again.”

No, not magic, language barriers are what prevent us from communicating properly. I will show you.”

The Sorcerer began gesturing in the air with a finger and as his finger moved trails of orange light left sigils and shapes hanging in the air, while he gestured he kept up a steady, rhythmic, intonation of foreign words.

The Robot whispered to the Doctor, Do you understand?”

The Doctor shook his head, No.”

Look closely.” He pointed to a string of figures in the growing series and said, That one, visualize that as an X, the following series as a pair of parentheses surrounding an equation, and that one as an equals signs. Do you understand?”

The Doctor’s jaw dropped, It’s an algebraic formula or cipher for unlocking the energy stored within a giant battery, his incantations are a voice recognition process aren’t they?”

Indeed. I can only assume there is some mental adaptation in his people, or perhaps some advance biological wetware that allows their will and intellect to properly direct the energy at their command. ”

The Gangster and Driver had remained silent and in the background, but the Driver leaned to the Gangster’s ear and whispered, You got any thoughts about all this?”

The Gangster exhaled a cloud of smoke and said, ”Demons seem to die quick enough if you plug em full of enough bullets an we got plenty a those. What’s got me good an concerned is that we got two of the damn nutter leadin us around Chi-town now.”

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

My Life In Gaming

Originally this post was going to be about gamer pride, but I think it has become something else, its still about pride but I think I'm trying to work something out here. Bear with me. On the issue of pride I do want to say something though. I'm not going to lie and say I never hid the fact that I was a DnD nerd, I have, because I was young and insecure. Now I'm an adult and I'm not. I am a fucking nerd. I will not lie about it anymore, because I have a game (or type rather) that I love and it is no more bizarre than rooting for some football team from another state that you've never been on or some boxer you've never met, or having some goofy fantasy football league with your friends. It has weird rules and systems for achieving goals just like every sport or game out there. You're either proud to be a gamer, or you're a coward who won't freely admit who and what you are. It doesn't mean you have to scream it from a mountaintop and wear shirts and logos and bumper stickers, it just means you have to say, "No I can't hang out, I'll be playing DnD with some buddies." If people would judge you for rolling dice and not be your friend or make fun of you, they're cunts with small dicks and smelly vaginas that never grew up and still think they're in junior high. Go throw your pigskin around and drink your Bud Light, dude. Go enjoy your sick kegger at Troy's house, man. Go play Halo and hump the head of every person you frag. I'll be building a world in my brain.

Despite the apparent vehemence of that stuff, I've never felt persecuted for my pen and paper RPG love as a youth, at least not by "bullies" or schoolmates. I mean, the only people I knew were guys like me that played magic and DnD and did goofy shit like that. It was my family that persecuted me. Not in the "haha hehe you're a loser" way, but in the "you're a degenerate and this needs to stop" way. In fact, before my grandma died suddenly, one of the last conversations we ever had about anything was that she wanted me to stop playing Dungeons and Dragons because it was wrong and evil. I don't recall her mentioning anything about God or anything, but she did say it was bad.

I love my grandma and I respect and value all she did for me in life and I cherish every memory of her, including that one. She was a nice lady and was made of rainbows and pure win and she made awesome food. But she was a bigoted uninformed fool. If you want to read about all the ridiculous controversy regarding DnD, which I attribute to be the cause of my family's assumptions about its nature, go here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dungeons_%26_Dragons_controversies

It all started in church. I had a friend. His name was Aaron. He had some books. He showed them to me and I fell in love with the 90s artwork and the idea of being a knight or an elf or whatever my mind desired. Aaron, Tiki (another friend aslo into this sort of thing), and I made some characters and built some Lego guys to represent them. That's about as far as we ever got because no one knew how to DM. Anyway, at the time I was on Ritalin which has a side effect of making you not hungry (in addition to causing paranoia and liver damage) so at the time I was skipping lunch and hanging out in the library. I used the lunch money I saved to buy Magic cards. Somewhat unethical since my parents provided it, but they made me sell my Atari, so fuck them. Anyway, I was on Ritalin all the time so Aaron brought his books with him to church and with Ritalin fueled concentration I copied roughly 2/3s of the three main books onto scrap paper in illegible scrawls. While hanging out in the library during lunch I grew to be friends with Jeremy and Eric and a few other guys. We all ended up playing DnD during lunch eventually. Jeremy also gave me a bunch of Magic cards, which supposedly upset his parents. I still have them, and the box they came in stores DnD minis.

I don't remember how she found out, but eventually my mom knew I was playing DnD and it was a whole big thing. I don't recall her arguments about why it was bad, only that she did not approve. I don't recall if she ever tried to understand why I liked it, or if I even understood why at the time.

Eventually my grades in school dropped, maybe because of DnD, maybe not, I don't recall. She took all my painstakingly hand copied notes and character sheets from me, she told me I could have them back if my grades picked up. Or at least I thought that was the agreement. I stole some of my notes back (enough to make characters and monsters) and replaced them with new notes that were freshly scribble gibberish. Sarah wasn't the only thief in the family back then. I worked like a motherfucker to get my grades up, and they did go up, except my notes were not given back and my mom would not admit to any sort of agreement or deal of any kind. My eyes blazed with the rage of a thousand orcs that would not meet their death upon the plain of double-sided college ruled note paper.

Eventually I got a job and did whatever the fuck I wanted with my money and bought actual books and played DnD. My mom seemed to relax once I hit 18 and took me off Aderall and stopped stealing my shit. If she didn't relax, she at least kept her disapproval limited to sighs and throat noises and weird limitations on the length of time I could have friends over and on what days such things could happen and how many were allowed at a time. I threw her off the scent by wielding Shawn and Nate as weapons of distraction.

I'll be honest. I spent way too much time playing DnD and writing DnD related stuff on my computer and in classes. I should have been getting another job and doing this or that or the other or something. I was a fucking immature kid that didn't know shit. I didn't even really get mature until my twenties. Why you ask? Because I was fucked up on Ritalin and Aderall all my youth. Call me a whiner or a bitch, I don't give a shit, but those drugs mess you up, I recall feeling messed up all the time. My brain was surrounded by metaphysical goop that slowed everything down for me, stopped me from doing things and saying things that I wanted to say and do. Made me feel like I was missing out on something. Is that an excuse for not growing up until my mid-twenties? No. It was a factor though, at least I think so.

Anyway, that's a brief and probably only partially accurate history of me and DnD. People wonder why I'm so intense and angry about DnD and get so easily frustrated by people not caring. Why I had to DM drunk to amuse myself. This is why. I have worked hard and fought hard to have the right to play my beloved game every step of the way and when it turns sour on me I take it especially hard.

You know, I don't shout it from the mountaintops that I play DnD or GURPS or whatever you want to call it. But I am in no way ashamed of that fact. I don't whisper at work or around my family when I'm talking about throwing polyhedrons (at least not anymore). Its who I am. It probably bugs Eric that I won't hang out with his work friends, and I'm sorry for that. I am who I am and I'm not going to lie about it to his friends because he is ashamed of who he is. If they ask me what I do and what I'm about, GURPS and DnD are going to be the first few things on my lips after Heather and writing and if that happens, I'll probably bring Eric down with me.

I'm not some militant gaming geek, but if some dumb frat boy reject little bitch makes fun of my hobby, I'm sure as fuck going to give as good as I get.

I think I did work something out here. I've never really vented about all that too much. I think it is a pretty clear picture of me and how I feel. I really don't feel that I've ever been persecuted by people for being a DnD geek, just my family like I said, so I don't have some deep seated nerd rage buried away. I dunno, maybe this is about me judging Eric or being pissed off at my mom. Who knows. It is what it is and I feel better after writing it.


When I first introduced Josh and Jeff to DnD I told them that we didn't need the dice or the rules or anything, all we needed was each other and we could role play that way. I was just now thinking of that and what it would be like to run a scenario without the rules. How would that work? I mean, does saying you do something mean you do something? Can another person just say, "No this happens." and then they have decided how things go? Do we go in a ring during encounters, each person having a say and overwriting the person before them? There needs to be some mechanic for who can say what and what overwrites what. So I thought perhaps everyone gets a hand of cards and it kind of plays like War. The guys are...we'll go with a cliche. The guys are fighting orcs, John says, "I take aim and shoot at the orc, aiming for his throat." then he lays down a ten of hearts. I look at my cards, look at the imaginary battlefield in my head and who is doing what and say, "The orc is engaged in a desperate melee with D'Alton, but he catches sight of you out of the corner of his eye and tries to keep moving and jumping around to throw off your aim." and I lay down a jack of clubs, my card is higher than his so the orc lives to pester D'Alton for another round. John can either let it go or say something like, "My guy is an expert shot and he factored in the bobbing and weaving of the orc." then he lays down an ace of diamonds. I grin and say, "Your shot is a little high and blows out its skull, splattering D'Alton with orc brains."

That might be interesting to try, might need more than one deck of cards though, because I kind of see a seven card hand, draw a new card after laying one down, when the draw pile is gone, shuffle the used cards back into it. Plus, the DM would need more cards because in most situations he controls more guys. Or maybe I just get a larger hand during battles.

...Did I just create a game?

An Hour Later: Evidently I am because its growing more and more complex in my head. For instance: Now Vyanth and Sereth characters add a +1 to their cards when they lay them down for issues related to agility and coordination. So a ten becomes a jack when they are dodging or balancing or using a bow.

Monday, September 21, 2009

In The 1800s (Inconcistencies Continued, Part 7)

As impressive as that is,” continued the Gangster, you’re still a moron.”

The Robot gave a shrug and moved to the tank and said, Brace yourself, Atlantean.”

The Vampire nodded and gave a toothy grin, then the Robot burst the heavy glass of the tank apart with a blow from his metal fist. Water and thick chunks of jagged glass went everywhere.

The Doctor scowled and said, That was perhaps slightly overdramatic.”

The Robot nodded and said, Agreed.”

The Vampire immediately began suffocating without water rushing past his gills. The Doctor sighed in resignation and rushed forward with a breathing apparatus and shut it closed around the Vampire’s neck. The device began making noise similar to the sound of tap water running out a faucet and the Vampire began breathing again. It leapt to its feet and the Doctor leapt away from it, his metal gauntlets humming with power and aimed in the Vampire’s directions.

Ammo belts began swishing as the Robot began cycling the barrels of his arm, Will you abide by our agreement?”

The Vampire smiled and said, Of course.”

Then it leapt at the Robot, who made a scratchy static-like noise with his speakers that could be considered as much a sigh of resignation as the one the Doctor had made.

The Robot’s sensors had detected miniscule movements of the tendons and muscles of the Vampire flesh and knew it had planned to lunge, so by the time it reached where he had been, he was actually behind the Vampire and he brought his clenched metal fist down on the back of its neck.

Your actions meet the letter of our agreement, but violate the spirit of it. You will suffer a time out for six hours.”

The Robot went to the thick power cables that had powered the Vampire’s tube and wrenched them out of the wall. The cable was about the thickness of two or three human fingers and when he returned to the fallen Vampire he tore it into shorter pieces and wrapped it around the creature’s limbs, effectively hog-tying it. Atlanteans had a semi-malleable bone structure so they were able to slip free of most bonds so the Robot called on the Doctor.

If you would fuse the cables together without severing any of its limbs your assistance would be appreciated.”

The Doctor shook his head and said, You are aware that these gauntlets are slightly more complex than welding tools?”

I am. Nonetheless, I lack energy weapons at this time and he is nearly as strong as I am. Anything short of fused metal bonds entrapping it is unlikely to hold it.”

The Doctor nodded and approached the Vampire. With a razor thin beam of red light he began to fuse the metal of the wiring together. The thick rubber exterior of the cable began smoking and filled the room with the awful stench of melted rubber. The Robot picked up the Vampire by a foot and hung it upside down from one of the various hooks on the wall in the Gangster’s portion of the lab.

That went pretty damn well I’d say,” said the Gangster with a chuckle.

The Robot nodded, Indeed. He made no attempts to harm any of you.”

The Driver raised a hand, one finger sticking out from the fist and twirled it around saying, Woohoo.”

Something beeped in the Doctor’s portion of the lab, and within the Robot’s chest. The two looked at each other, the Doctor with a raised eyebrow.

It would be prudent for us to take cover I think.”

The Gangster checked the action on his Tommy gun and said, From what?”

The level of radiation in the lab is increasing exponentially, although it does not appear to be any kind of radiation I am familiar with.”

The Doctor tapped something on his gauntlet and it made noises and he said, It’s not radiation as we understand it, and whatever it is that is beginning to saturate the lab isn’t hostile to human flesh, at least not at its current levels.”

Comforting,” said the Driver.

There was a crack like the thunder of a sonic boom that came from everywhere at once and suddenly the room stank of ozone and rotten eggs and burning matches. Everyone startled into motion, looking everywhere at once, weapons readied. The snap and pop of electricity joined the noise filling the room but there was no sign of lightning anywhere.

In his cold, emotionless voice the Robot said, Something comes.”

What in the name of all that’s licentious and illegal does that mean?” yelled the Gangster above the racket.

Hug the walls, away from the center of the room.”

Everyone followed the Doctor’s orders and retreated from the center of the room. Something appeared where they’d been standing, more specifically where the Doctor had been standing. It was a small orb of blue, like the pilot light of a flamethrower about to burn down the universe. Scorch marks began to appear on the floor near the floating orb, which was beginning to grow in size. Bolts of lightning began to fall from it and reach out to the floor and the nearby workstations. The Robot’s sensors told him that any one of those little fingers of plasma could split him in two. He took another step back from the ball of lightning.

The orb grew to the size of a man, and then to the size of the Robot and in its depths a black tear appeared like a hole in the bottom of the universe. A huddled form fell out of the hole, its clothing smoking as if from fire and its body still. With one last thunderclap the ball of energy shrank once more to the size of a flickering blue pilot light and disappeared.

The Doctor and Robot approached the crumpled form, which they determined was human. The Robot turned his torso towards the Doctor and then back to the body on the floor, his gun arm shifting its direction a hair towards the Doctor and then back to the body. He stopped moving and let the Doctor approach.

The body’s clothing was burned black, but it was otherwise ok, two metal bracelets, almost like medieval metal wristguards stood out on its arms. When the Doctor flipped the body over there was a sudden shocked intake of breath and a widening of eyes all across the room, for the man on the floor was the Doctor. From his bad teeth to his pale blue eyes, he was the Doctor’s twin in every way.

Then there was another thunderclap and something else fell out of the ether that sat between worlds. It was the size of the Robot and clad in primitive metal armor, but unlike the Robot’s clean metallic smell, this creature reeked of rotten eggs and freshly struck matches. What flesh could be seen on it was beat red, like skin held too long under scalding hot water and its face was as inhuman as the Vampire’s. Horns sprouted from its head and its eyes were as black and alien as the Vampire’s.

I can read its biometrics with my scanners, but I cannot process the information properly. I would estimate that it is hostile.”

The Gangster spat the last stub of a cigarette from his mouth and said, All I was needing to know.”

Then the piano thundered and riddled the red-skinned thing with bullets. The Gangster emptied half a drum before the rounds had any effect on the creature even when they didn’t ricochet off its armor, and the ones that did leave wounds only caused it to snarl in rage and howl words in some gut twisting language.

The Doctor pulled his twin clear of the red-skinned thing and had erected a blue shield of force to protect them from the thing, and the spray of bullets from the other side of the room. With his other gauntlet he sent beams of searing energy towards the thing. It ignored them.

In one hand the creature bore a huge cleaver of a sword, like something out of a bad fantasy movie, something too large and unwieldy for a human to use with one or two hands. It whipped the blade around in one clawed hand as easily as the Vampire slashed at its foes with its talons. From its other talon tipped hand eerie green drops of fluid dripped from the nails and left scorch marks on the floor.

The Robot set its own weapon to flinging death and found his weapon only slightly more effective than the Gangsters, which made it a priority in the monster’s eyes and the creature rushed towards it. When they crashed together the Robot ignored the massive cleaver and gripped the creature’s shoulder with its fist, and it cost him.

The massive blade was not of this world and neither was the monster, whose strength was much greater than the Vampire’s and likely equal to the Robot’s own. The blade hit the Robot’s chest in a diagonal blow and stuck there, buried a full inch in the armored hide of the Robot. The Robot stumbled back from the inertia of the blow but managed to keep his metal digits around the creature’s shoulder.

Fuck,” yelled the Driver eloquently as he saw the Robot’s renowned hide split.

That was unexpected,” said the Robot as he stuck his gun arm into the belly of the red creature and put the weapon on full auto.

Everyone duck,” he said as he expended 40% of his ammunition stores on the creature’s belly.

When he had finished there was a hole clear through the belly of the monster and its chest armor was completely buckled and torn apart. Bullets had ricocheted all over the room, bouncing from the armor and from the Doctor’s shield of energy. The Driver and Gangster had taken cover in the Chevy and that had kept them intact, but the Chevy itself needed a new paint job and some repairs to its exterior.

The Robot dropped the corpse but the blade stuck in his chest. Its sensors had determined there was no internal damage whatsoever, but any blow of any sort that hit upon the seam in his chest would likely penetrate his interior. The Robot wrenched the blade out of its body and set its sensors to determining how it had been able to cut it open.

I cannot determined the origin of this alloy.”

Fancy. How about determining what the fuck just happened, can you do that toaster?” yelled the Gangster.

My function is more complex than a toaster, and no, I cannot determine what happened.”

Looks like a demon straight out of Hell, said the Driver.

Unlikely. Hell is an imaginary place that was used to soothe the minds victims of crime and violence by promising eventual punishment and some sort of prison-like plane of fire and or ice, it is Christian metaphor for concepts like karma.”

Say what you like tin man, red skin, don’t burn like other shit does when the Doctor hits it with the red lights, an it’s got horns. Sounds like a demon to me.”